Back in 2004, I was in Burbank, California to interview Brian Wilson for the Toronto Sun. My first two days were full of interviews and work, but the Sunday before I was to head home I found some time to hit the movies and see Shaun Of The Dead, which had just been released in North America after becoming a hit in its native U.K. Directed by Edgar Wright and staring Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, all virtual unknowns here, the film set the standard for combining horror and comedy. The trip had crafted a masterpiece, and their next effort, the cop comedy Hot Fuzz, while not quite SOTD, was another strong movie.
Wright, Pegg and Frost have teamed up for another big screen offering, the final in what they’re calling their “Three Cornetto” trilogy. Does it equal its predecessors? Find out after the jump!
The World’s End is the story of Gary King (Pegg), an alcoholic whose best years were his high school ones. So to recapture a little of those glory days, he reunites his old crew of friends (including Frost and Martin Freeman) to complete a pub crawl in their hometown of Newton Haven. Things don’t go quite as expected when the friends discover the town isn’t how they left it.
For fans of Edgar Wright, Simon Pegg and Nick Frost, The World’s End is a must-see. The three of them have an undeniable chemistry and have put together another strong, thoughtful film that, like Newton Haven, is more than meets the eye. While it mixes both comedy and science-fiction, the film is without question the most dramatic the trio have worked on together, especially with how it deals with aging and growing apart. Pegg plays against type in The World’s End – he’s the screw-up here, the comedic foil here to Frost’s straight man. It actually works very well – credit to them both for demonstrating real acting chops. And if you’ve watched SOTD and Hot Fuzz multiple times, as I have, you’ll definitely enjoy the tributes to those films that run throughout The World’s End.
While fans will enjoy the film, and I did, I have to admit that I thought it was the least amusing of the three; there weren’t any really hard, laugh out loud moments. I smiled a lot; in fact, I think I smiled throughout the entire running time, but I can’t say that I laughed particularly hard at any one point.
Overall, The World’s End is worth checking out at some point in time, but if you decide to wait until its on VOD or DVD, you won’t be missing out on a big screen experience. Just don’t wait until the world’s end.